Year 764 of the New Age
Location: Glenmore, Near the Ridgebacks
Terrwyn and www.deviantart.com/art/Riska-D…
It was already becoming spring and she was larger than her last pregnancy. She was hungry, but for what she didn’t know for. The fawn within her was being quiet for the most part and she was out searching to see what was in bloom and edible. Tomu and her ate the last of the hay last week and she was scared to use her magic to sense what was good to eat and what wasn’t. Her last pregnancy left her ill afterwards when she was using her magic so close to fawning. She was about to eat some weird berries when she heard someone call out to her. Riska
Riska had been wandering for a bit in Glenmore, torn, not sure what she would do next. It had been many, many years since she’d been around this herd, but Rihi had always loved the verdant forests here, so she’d decided to make her way back to see it one more time for her. If she kept going north, she could go back to her birthplace, but it had been so long since she’d been there, and she’d left behind so much heartache, she wasn’t sure what would be there for her- but did she truly want to spend the rest of her life in the gloomy forests of Blackwood?
She was torn from her musings as her ears picked up the sound of something moving up ahead. The chances of it being some dangerous predator were slim, but she wasn’t foolish enough to not exercise caution. She crept forward to see what it was, and what she saw was certainly dangerous, though not a danger to herself.
“Stop! You can’t eat that!” she called to the greying, pregnant doe, hoping she was warning her in enough time.Terrwyn
Terrwyn stopped in time to the verbal warning given to her. She turned her head and looked at the doe the gave her the warning in time. “Oh hello there, um what's wrong with the berries?” Terrwyn cocked her head to the side and was looking well like a young fawnling learning new words. She didn’t know this doe wasn’t a glenmore born doe. Honestly Terrwyn didn’t care. She walked up to the new doe, well waddled up to her honestly. Riska
Riska walked closer to the other doe, looking her over to make sure she looked well. “Usually they’re rather harmless, though they’ll make your stomach turn if you eat too many. However, since you’re carrying a fawn, the effects could be much stronger. It would be best not to risk it.” she answered. She was a bit surprised that the grey doe seemed so willing to hear her out- sure, she was much smaller than an actual Blackwood, but they were still close to the border and the wolf fangs tied to her herb pouches and in her mane were quite a giveaway, but she was relieved to not be treated like an outsider, or worse, an enemy. “If you want, I could help you find something a bit more suitable for you to eat?” Though she wasn’t as informed on Glenmore’s plants as she was on Windborn and Blackwood, so close to the mountains many of the plants should still be similar, or so she hoped.Terrwyn
“I would like that very much.” Terrwyn was thrilled a herbalist was roaming. She would hope to learn something else besides catnip and foxglove. “I am Terrwyn, by the way. I am daughter of guardsman Kemp and commoner Eries.” She bowed to the other doe in respect. She felt her fawn shift within her. Her stomach gave a growl of frustration of being empty. Terrwyn blushed bright pink in embrassement. Riska
Riska didn’t try to hold back the smile as Terryn’s stomach loudly complained. “It’s alright, I know how hard carrying a fawn can be on a stomach,” she said. She then bowed, returning the respectful gesture. “It’s nice to meet you, Terrwyn. I am Riska, daughter of soldier Zusil and herbalist Abak'edi,” she felt a small pang of regret as she said her parents name and couldn’t help but wonder how they were, if they still lived. “Of Windborn,” she added on, uncertain if that was a wise thing to add, but better to have all the truth out. Though she hoped it wouldn’t be an issue, if it was she would still make sure that Terrwyn found something more suitable to eat before leaving.
“Now, let’s go find you something to eat,” she said as she cast her eyes about, deciding which way they should head to find this meal.Terrwyn
Terrwyn was very curious over Riska now. She has never heard of Windborne. “What is Windborne?” She was excited on meeting a fawnling from another herd. She followed Riska as they went on to finding edible food. She wondered how Riska was here and what magic she controlled. She only met one blackwood and an oakfern and they controlled a different magic from herself. Riska
Riska looked at Terrwyn curiously, but she was a bit pleased to meet someone so inquisitive. She started walking south, trying to recall what plant life she had seen as she’d come this way. “Windborn’s herdland is somewhat northward, across the Blackfoot Sound. It’s a good deal different there, to say the least. Is there anything specific you want to know about it? It’s been a long time since I’ve been there, but I’ll do my best to answer your questions.”
A breeze was starting to pick up, and she thought she smelled a familiar herb that would be just perfect for Terrwyn. She altered her course to follow the scent, hoping her nose wasn’t tricking her. Terrwyn
“What kind of magic does Windborn have? Do yall have earth magic?” She had many questions for Riska, but she didn’t want to overload her like she did others from different herds. She was excited to meet another fawnling from a different herd. Terrwyn’s thirst for knowledge was like a newborn fawn drinking from their mother from the first time. Normally she was shy and stayed to herself unless it was something to do with teaching. Riska
“No, not earth magic,” she answered, and with a slight smile she called to her magic and redirected the breeze to swirl playfully around Terrwyn, mussing her mane. “We can, to a degree, call to an manipulate the wind. The more practiced magic users can do some more incredible feats, but the plant life always seemed to call to me more than practicing magic.” Which was fortunate, as wherever she went, knowing basic herb lore came in handy- such as now, for instance. With that thought, she finally spotted the silvery leaves she’d been hoping to find.
“Aha!” she exclaimed. “Here’s something that should suit you until we can find some meadowgrass or something more suitable for a meal. It’s spearmint, good for settling the stomach. It should make things more bearable, at the very least.Terrwyn
Terrwyn found the information fascinating about Riska’s birth herd. She was impressed when she felt the wind play with her mane. She was grateful for the spearmint and started to eat the plant. It was a strong flavor but in a odd way refreshing. She ate all that she could until they started to look for meadow grass. “I really appreciate the help and your birth herd sounds very interesting. Do they set fawnlings worth by gender or by color favoring?” Terrwyn was wondering why the pretty doe left, but she felt she had her reasons. She didn’t want to push her new friend away and being rude would not help any. Specially with her aiding her right now. She felt movement in her belly in agreeance or so it seemed any ways. Riska
Although it filled her with homesickness, it was nice, if bittersweet, to be talking about her once home. “I am more than glad to help,” she said, and it was true. Through her travels, she had been in so many situations where she could have died had another not stepped in to help, and so she was willing to continue that on and help where she could.
“In Windborne there really aren’t any beauty standards, and does and stags are, for the most part, seen equally. Stags, of course, will act more important for the herd, though.” She walked alongside Terrwyn, looking for a good grazing spot, occasionally redirecting the wind so she could try and catch smells that might help lead them the right way.
As they talked, Riska realized that while she had been around Glenmore before, she didn’t know much about their customs. Her first time through she hadn’t met with many fawnlings who were so open with her- most were guarded and untrusting, if not hostile in their suspicion. “What about Glenmore? What is considered beautiful, and how are different fawnlings viewed?”Terrwyn
Terrwyn enjoyed hearing Riska’s home herd customs. “Honestly the paler the doe the prettier they are unless they are grey then they are just ugly to other stags. Does are not worth much unless they are the color of a princess. Then maybe they could give the family a decent standing. The darker the stags the better they are. Dark stags and pale does are the standard. Honestly I prefer the light stags to moderate dark red stags. Its really upsetting that does can’t get far ahead.” She looked sheepish to Riska. “I wanted to live in Blackwood, but sadly I am too pale for that land. At times I think I am the reject of most herd standards. I do not know what Silverthorne customs are honestly, but with that herd being known as hot heads, I am sure I would be just well off where I am now.” Terrwyn sighed, but was happy in a strange way. Her fawn kicked her inside. Yes her little one on the way will help end the loneliness. She hoped her fawn would be able to go further than she, but so long as they were happy she was okay. Riska
What Terrwyn said both intrigued and confused her- she couldn’t hold back further questioning. “Why are lighter colored does more favored? And why is grey so bad?” Grey was light, as time went on- wouldn’t that be seen as the doe becoming more favorable, rather than less? In Blackwood, the favored dark coats had a purpose, to camouflage; what advantage could lighter coats have that it became so sought after?
“I imagine that could get to be more than just a little frustrating,” she said when her new friend mentioned that there weren’t opportunities to get ahead for the does. Sure, stags liked to be front and center in Windborne, but the does were in no way seen as so inferior that they could not find a way to become important to the herd- does were soldiers, healers, stormbringers, and herbalists just like the stags. And Blackwood, well, that was a whole other matter.
She couldn’t help but connect with the young doe’s feelings. After she had lost her first fawn, Riska had felt a similar feeling of not belonging in her home. If she hadn’t come across her dear friend Rihi that fateful day, she wasn’t sure what would have become of her, but she was more than thankful that she had had the chance to explore the Isles. “Being pale in Blackwood is a danger,” she admitted, “And I can’t say too much about Silverthorne, I was not there for very long before moving on.” She considered suggesting a trip to Windborne if she was looking for a big change, but her attention was drawn to Terrwyn’s stomach as the fawn inside moved. No, it would be too risky for years to come with her little one- best not to even suggest it.
“Even when things seem hopeless, something can come along that can give you purpose,” she settled on saying, thinking back on the times in her life when she had felt lost and hopeless. Something had always happened that gave her a reason to keep on going, and she had faith that the same would happen for this kind doe.Terrwyn
“Honestly I don’t understand the preference for the lighter does. I think the reason grey isn’t favorable is it can mask one's true color and can pass too easy on the stags. Maybe the paler the doe the more she would have to depend on their stag for their needs.” Terrwyn was just frustrated with how her herd really worked when you really put thought to it. She had entertained leaving Glenmore to explore the lands on her own, but she was too fearful of finding a place that was worst than her birth herd. She mentally sighed to herself. The way she saw it, she was stuck. It wasn’t so bad though, but honestly she was deemed useless and honestly there was freedom of those that thought that way. She was able to be around the doe by her side. She worried for her herd’s future though. What life would her fawn live? After what Riska said about, “Even when things seem hopeless, something can come along that can give you purpose,” Which gave Terrwyn a peace of mind for the moment.. “You’re right Riska, I have felt useless to my home herd. Maybe some day I will find my true purpose to fit in.” She smiled to Riska. She hoped someday she would find her true purpose. Riska
“Hmm, that would make a kind of sense. Stags do love making themselves feel more important than they actually are,” she mused. After living in such dangerous herds, it made her feel almost disgusted to hear that reason for the preference. Why make life more dangerous than it needed to be like that? Was it not easier to make sure that the entire herd could be safe, should anything happen? But, then again, Glenmore didn’t have the thylacines of Windborne, the wolves of Blackwood, or the big cats of Oakfern and Silverthorne; that was part of the reason Rihi had wanted to return. You didn’t have to worry about being hunted or finding food here. Of course, that didn’t mean that life in Glenmore was easy, as this poor doe illustrated.
She gave Terrwyn a reassuring smile. “There is a reason out there for all of us,” she said, then shot a meaningful glance at her bulging tummy. “And I think your little one will give you plenty of purpose for a while.” She paused for a second, thinking, then continued on. “I don’t know much about Glenmore, but, being a wanderer, I know what it is like to not fit in. I have also found a way to be useful. Truthfully, I don’t know much about Glenmore, but it seems like all herds value and have use for a skilled magic user or herbalist. In fact, how we met is proof of that! Maybe, should it interest you, you could work on gaining knowledge in one of those areas and make a place for yourself in the herd?” Terrwyn
She took in what Riska told her about being useful in other ways. She was right, a good healer by herb collection would be nice, or growing food for others. Honestly there was other things she could do if she put her mind to it. She sighed. “Your right Riska. I can put some use in doing something if I put my mind to it. I am very glad and lucky to have come across you in your travels. I know Glenmore has little to no predators. I hope you find the herbs for your travels and plenty of grazing. If you ever need a den to sleep in or take shelter, please don’t hesitate to ask.” Terrwyn was enjoying being near Riska and learning new exciting things of other herds and her knowledge of herbs, her own unique magic, etc. She was an interesting doe and hopefully she would take her offer when she was in Glenmore. Her fawn kicked in an almost agreement. Just then birds flew into the sky while a lone fox trotted out of a bush with a dead bird in it’s mouth. Terrwyn watched the fox till it went on with it’s own bussiness. Then she noticed the sun was beginning to start turning into sunset. She was out all day with Riska that she just lost track of time. Riska
Riska had realized, belatedly, that she might have been rambling on, giving advice where it had not been asked, but she did want to help. She was glad to see that Terrwyn hadn’t minded, and in fact seemed to be seriously considering it.
She listened to the younger doe, her words bringing up a mixture of feelings. “I’m glad that I could help in some small way, my new friend,” she started. She was quite glad to have met the pretty and pregnant grey doe; it was so nice to come across someone so friendly and open, and so good-hearted. “I wish you all the best in whatever you choose to do- with your determination, I’m sure that you will do well on any path that you choose to take, Terrwyn.”
The next part, she couldn’t help but be really happy about. “Thank you very much,” she said, smiling. “I would be more than honored to spend some more time with you, and perhaps even take the opportunity to meet your little one when he or she comes into the world!” It would be very nice, having the option to come back and see her. She was still so unsure of where she was headed. When she had left Blackwood and crossed through the Ridgeback Range mountains through the Northern Pass, she had been filled with such a sense of adventure once more, mingled along with other feelings. Her dear friend Rihi had loved the Glenmore land so much, Riska had a mingling sense of joy and sadness. So many memories- they had had such fun here, but looking back, especially on that period of her life, was always difficult. She had planned on possibly going all the way back to Windborne, but faced with the task of crossing the waters again was daunting. Last time, she had been with a large group of at least twelve, and only two had survived. This time, however, she was by herself and much older. If she could make the swim and avoid the sharks and other predators from below, she would then have to search out the herd to find what remained of her family. And once she was there, she would most likely be there for good, and she wasn’t sure she was ready to leave her friends and family behind. So much was still uncertain, but she did know that she hoped to meet Terrwyn again. “I’m sure that we will meet again, sometime in the future.”
Riska joined Terrwyn in watching the fox pass by, and saw the doe make note of the sun’s position; it was time Riska took her leave. “It is probably time I was on my way. I hope all the best for you and yours, and I do hope that one day we meet again.” Riska gave Terrwyn one last friendly smile, and with that, walked onwards in her journey.